The digital film closely mimics the video footage of Abraham Zapruder.

PORTSMOUTH, N.H. (AP) – A local 3-D computer animation and multimedia company has put together a computerized recreation of President Kennedy’s assassination for a series shown on Court TV.

The project originated from a request by the series, “Forensic Files” for the 40th anniversary of the assassination.

The animation was used in a Wednesday night episode of Court TV’s “Forensic Files” re-examining the investigation into the assassination. The show will re-air Saturday at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 10 p.m.

The company, called M23D, was established in 1999. It will be renaming itself Hatchling Studios in January. Company president Marc Dole has done projects for television before, having worked on several commercials and reconstructions for educational programming.

With Dole and his staff working 14-hour days, and a 20-computer “render farm” working the other 10 hours, the company was able to put together in just eight days a two-minute film consisting of 18 animation sequences.

The film uses five unique camera angles, Dole said – including a view from the infamous grassy knoll to show the vantage point a possible shooter would have had from that position. The five virtual cameras are “filming” at the exact time of the gunshot, he said.

One viewpoint shows what Kennedy is thought to have seen from his seat in the presidential limousine, as well as one from the opposite side of the motorcade, showing how a straight line can be drawn between the car and the book depository building, thought to be the site from which the gun was fired that killed the president.

“We also produced a view of the presidents limo from (Lee Harvey) Oswalds perspective,” Dole said. “Its dramatic, even a bit spooky, but its also very useful and instructive data.”

The piece, in effect, mimics the famous Abraham Zapruder film. Zapruder, a spectator who was part of the crowd greeting the president, was the sole person to film the deadly shot to Kennedy’s head.

The company’s animation begins moments before the president is shot, and shows Kennedy and Texas Gov. John Connally being hit.

The work includes multiple angles, and traces the paths of bullets Dole said were unmistakably fired from the sixth floor of the book depository, where Oswald was believed to have been sitting. One angle shows the scene as viewed through a sharpshooter’s scope.

Dole said the company used a variety of sources, reports, analyses, and the Zapruder film itself to recreate the event.

He said the company recreated every detail in Dealey Plaza in Dallas relevant to the shooting, including a tree that some claim obstructed Oswald’s view of the car, and a street sign that Kennedy’s motorcade passed in the Zapruder film.

AP-ES-11-19-03 1445EST



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